April 4, 2022
- CALL TO ORDER AND Announcements
The regular meeting of the Academic Senate, held on April 4, 2022, was called to order at 3:01 pm by Senate President Christy Porucznik. As had been announced on the Senate website and by email, this meeting was held using the Zoom online meeting platform due to COVID-19 pandemic conditions. Attendance was confirmed by requiring Senate members (and invited guests and public attendees) to register in advance for the online meeting.
Present: Michael Abrahamson, Serena Aeschilman, Rohit Aggarwal, Sharon Aiken-Wisniewski, Soheila Amirsoleimani, Yoshimi Anzai, Gloria Aquino, Michael Battistone, Erin Beeghly, Matthew Bettini, Melissa Bobick, David Bowling, Simon Brewer, Jonathan Brogaard, Kenneth Bromberg, Jessica Brown, Richard Brown, Adrienne Cataxinos, Owen Chan, Thomas Cheatham, Holden Cheney, Gerald Cochran, Sarah Creem-Regehr, Stuart Culver, Shanti Deemyad, Nadja Durbach, Stacy Firth, Annette Fleckenstein, Gina Frey, Amos Guiora, Eric Handman, Sara Hart, Bill Hesterly, Anna Hodgson, John Hollerbach, Harriet Hopf, Alexander Hyres, Luis Ibarra, Thunder Jalili, Jay Jordan, Youjeong Kang, James Karner, R. James Keddington, Seth Keeton, Matti Koenig, Keith Koper, Mike Lewis, Shane Lloyd, Kerry Lohmeier, Jack Longino, Gabriel Lozada, Robin Marcus, Staci McIntosh, Rajesh Menon, Eugene Mishchenko, Ed Muñoz, Anna Neatrour, Adrian Palmer, Marcel Paret, Robert Parker, Jeff Pettey, Tom Quinn, Kevin Rathunde, Alessandro Rigolon, Paul Shami, Xiaoming Sheng, Doug Shumway, Momina Sial, Robert Smith, Tim Smith, Brian Snapp, Ryan Steele, Sondra Stegenga , Nick Tygesen , Kent Udell, Hunter Underhill, Jessica Van Der Volgen, Muskan Walia, Crystal Wallenius, Melodie Weller, Peter West, Jessica Wojciechowski, Jaehee Yi, Kilo Zamora, Susan Zickmund
Excused with substitute: Emi Radetich, Seetha Veeraghanta, Jaclyn Winter
Absent: Robert Bowles, Jen Brown, Juliet Carlisle, Promothesh Chatterjee, Hilary Coon, Sydney Gilliand, Ganesh Gopalakrishnan, Manu Goyal, Bradley Hunter, Srikanth Iyengar, Jeremiah Jaggers, Audrey Laney, Titus Larrieu, John Lin, Lakshan Lingam, Frank McAlpin, Nancy McLaughlin, Kent Ono, Susie Porter, Sean Redmond, Ofer Rog, Alan Rogers, Jeff Schwartz, Roger Silvers, Taylor Sparks, Dave Symons, Daniel Vargo, Maeve Wall, Shundana Yusaf , Brandon Zielinski, Kelly MacArthur
Ex Officio: Randy Dryer, Robert Fujinami, Taylor Gregory, Lisa Hutton, Paul Mogren, Allyson Mower, Christina Porucznik, Sarah Projansky, Taylor Randall, Sonia Salari, Jo Scofield, Jane Laird
Senate President Christy Porucznik, referring to the posted Senate meeting schedule for the 2022-2023 academic year, asked that returning Senate members add next year’s meeting dates to their calendar. Senator Gabriel Lozada had notified Christy that the UofU Retirement Planning Committee had postponed its meeting, and so he does not have an update on this issue yet.
- APPROVAL OF MINUTES
The minutes dated March 14, 2022, were approved upon a motion Sonia Salari and a second from Amos Guiora.
- REQUEST FOR NEW BUSINESS
There were no requests for new business.
- CONSENT CALENDAR
Xiaoming Sheng moved to approve the Faculty Matters Reports. The motion passed after a second from Sharon Aiken-Wisniewski.
Report from Administration
University of Utah President Taylor Randall thanked everyone who participated in his recent presidential inauguration. He also updated the Senate on efforts to acquire Fort Douglas’s 25 acres from the Department of Defense. The goal is to help with future campus expansion and unification between the main and health sciences areas. He also introduced the College of Mines and Earth Sciences Dean Darryl Butt to help present updates on the proposal to merge that college with the College of Science.
Dean Butt explained that the unit merger would elevate student programs, improve resource efficiencies and utilization, and position the new entity for future prominence and leadership in research and educational excellence. The merger process is currently planned for a two-phase implementation. Organizing merged oversight structures and managerial areas is tentatively scheduled to begin July 1, 2022. Faculty and staff will engage in working groups to identify possible revisions to governance and oversight structures. There will be no changes to units, majors, faculty, or staff. Other important structural alignment policies that need to be approved by university entities, such as the Academic Senate, will occur in Phase 2. The tentative timing for initiating Phase 2 is July 1, 2023.
SVP Michael Good expressed appreciation to President Randall for institutional connections recently developed with Howard University leadership. He also reported on current COVID case levels experienced at UofU health sciences and added remarks on recent health sciences building construction progress and the West Valley City initiative.
Executive Committee Report
Senate President-elect Sonia Salari reported that the Senate Executive Committee (EC) had met on March 21, 2022, and identified the decisions made on the agenda items presented at this meeting.
Report from ASUU
ASUU President Jessica Wojciechowski told the Senate that ASUU leaders were wrapping up the academic year and ASUU elections had recently concluded. They will be working on establishing a smooth transition for incoming student leaders.
- NOTICE OF INTENT CALENDAR
There were no items for the Notice of Intent Calendar
- DEBATE CALENDAR
New Graduate Certificate: Working with Native Communities
Cynthia Benally, Department of Education, Culture, and Society (ECS), introduced an ECS proposal for an interdisciplinary graduate certificate: Working with Native Communities. The certificate program aims to reduce misconceptions and stereotypes with native communities, especially with academic research. It will support students pursuing professional experience and research in a variety of fields in which they will work directly or indirectly with Native communities. The certificate requires 15 credit hours from the College of Education, School of Cultural and Social Transformation, and other colleges and departments throughout the University. She explained that once the proposal passes, she will ask different colleges and departments to offer additional supporting curricula. Brian Snapp, seconded by Sonia Salari, moved to approve the certificate program proposal. The motion passed.
New Minor: Accounting
Marlene Plumlee, Chair of the School of Accounting, presented a proposed new Accounting minor program that responds to student demand. Students in this minor will get an expanded understanding of the varied and interdisciplinary aspects of accounting in areas such as financial, business, and tax reporting–even if they are not business majors. The coursework offered will provide an expanded education to students from a number of majors. The program entails five core classes and a one-credit ethics course. Shanti Deemyad’s motion to approve the new minor passed after a second from Richard Brown.
Rule 4-050B – University Software
Deputy CIO Ken Pink discussed updates to Rule 4-050B University Software that will bring university policy into compliance with Utah State regulations. The University was found, during State audits, to have not properly evaluated purchased software for risk and accessibility.
Information security is an important issue at the University, and these updates support ongoing measures to improve and enhance that. The revisions presented were compromises formulated from consultations with the Senate Academic Committee for Information Technology (SACIT) since early 2020. The new procedures and the exceptions/carve-outs for revised requirements were also discussed. Ryan Steele moved to approve the Rule update. The motion passed after a second from Jay Jordan.
Presidential Search Task Force Final Report
Co-Chairs Robin Marcus and Leslie Francis presented the Presidential Search Task Force final report, and thanked Task Force members for their valuable contributions. At the October 4, 2021, Academic Senate meeting, Senators voted to empanel a task force to investigate the presidential selection process in USHE and peer organizations and make recommendations for future searches. They explained that search processes vary across peer institutions in areas such as the role of faculty, staff, and student’s input. Because institutions’ search committee membership is not specified in state statute, these committee structures are open to interpretation. The presenters reviewed the methods, findings, and task force recommendations for future searches for R-1 universities specifically because different considerations may be relevant to other types of institutions in the state. They added that the seven report recommendations are forward-looking and should not be taken as comments on any prior searches or their outcomes. Brian Snapp moved to accept the report and endorse its recommendations. In addition, Senate President Porucznik would be asked to present this endorsement to the Utah Board of Higher Education. The motion passed, with one opposed, after a second from Randy Dryer
- Information and Recommendations Calendar
SACEDI Annual Report and Committee Presentation
Senate Advisory Committee on Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion (SACEDI) members Dave Derezotes, Chair, and David Hawkins-Jacinto presented slides reviewing the work provided by two SACEDI subcommittees studying issues of ageism and rankism. In addition, building on a Diversity Action Plan and Practices (DAPP) pilot study presented last year, SACEDI has developed a more concrete structure proposal for the next three phases of DAPP. Phase 1 includes a series of workshops. Phase 2 concerns unit-specific programming. DAPP Pilot Phase 3 aims to develop a resource website to further support participating units. The presenters asked that Senators to send comments and questions as the committee continues to plan for next year.
Senate Personnel and Elections Committee Update
Dale Larsen, Senate Personnel and Elections Committee (SPEC) Chair, updated the Senate on recent and upcoming committee and Senate elections. Nominations for Senate president-elect and Senate Executive Committee members are due April 11, 2022. Those electronic elections will be held during the May 2 Senate meeting. The results of college or governing area 2022-23 Senate elections were announced. Dale recommended that current Senators contact incoming college colleagues to advise on how the Senate manages the critical issues presented during the year. SPEC held its Senate and University committee vacancy nominations meeting on March 18. Senators will receive an electronic ballot on April 4 to elect new Senate committee members from those SPEC nomination slates. He asked that Senators with questions or suggestions contact him or the Senate President.
Financial Conflict of Interest Policy 1-006 and Rule 1-006C Revision
Emily Ostrander, Director of the Conflict of Interest Office (COI), and Hailey Ritchie, Office of General Counsel, explained revisions to the following regulations:
- [Interim] Policy 1-006: Individual Financial Conflict of Interest Policy
- [Interim] Rule 1-006C: Individual Financial Conflict of Interest in Research
- New Procedure 1-006B: Conflict of Interest Office Procedures Related to Requirements for Federally Funded Research
- Guideline 1-006A: Determining Relatedness to Research
The current policy and regulation versions were approved in February 2021 on an interim basis and are now ratified as the final versions. Additional policy changes ensure compliance with new federal regulations, and the presenters identified the details of these final submissions. Christy Porucznik also asked Senators to convey the COI policy updates to constituents.
Procurement Policy 3-100 and Rule Changes
Procurement Policy 3-100 and its associated Rules have not been updated since 2013, reported Terri O’Toole, Purchasing Department Associate Director. In the updated policy, some of the revisions correct outdated and obsolete information. Other changes improve efficiencies, such as the small purchase threshold was increased from $5,000 to $10,000.
University Global Initiatives Update
An overview of the Office for Global Engagement’s (OGE) strategic framework for UofU global engagement was provided by Brian Gibson, Chief Global Officer. There are four principal impact areas that OGE manages: Outgoing student & knowledge mobility; Incoming student and scholar experience & integration; Internationalization of curriculum, research & engagement; International partnerships & presence. Brian reviewed the four impact areas and explained that a larger set of OGE information slides had also been included in the meeting materials so that Senators can review trends, issues, and areas of future OGE focus. He welcomed the chance to speak about OGC programs with individuals and departments.
Honorary Degree Task Force Report
Senators had requested at the last Senate meeting that the Honorary Degree Task Force Report’s recommendations and findings be discussed by the Senate Executive Committee (EC) in order to finalize an appropriate next action. Christy Porucznik explained that the EC gave its approval to accept the report, thank the Task Force, and ask her, as Senate President, to forward to the Board of Trustees for its review and discussion.
Senate Committee Annual Reports–SACAP
Senate President Christy Porucznik noted that the 2022-2023 Senate Advisory Committee on Academic Policy (SACAP) Annual Report was included in the meeting materials for Senate review. She thanked SACAP members and its Chair, Mary Beth Vogel-Ferguson, for their work during an exceptionally busy year.
Senate Advisory Committee on University Strategic Planning Update
The Senate Advisory Committee on University Strategic Planning (SACUSP) Faculty Survey response rate was strong, reported SACUSP Chair Randy Dryer. Results are being analyzed by the Education Policy Center and a final report will be distributed by email. He thanked Senators who helped circulate the survey link so that the committee benefited from high faculty response.
- NEW BUSINESS
There were no items for New Business
- OPEN DISCUSSION
There were no items for Open Discussion
Meeting adjourned at 5:06 pm.